Jan 2, 2013

Making Plans for the Year

Did you made your New Year Resolutions? I haven't. The only one I have so far is "post at least weekly at the Hungarian blog", but then I guess by the end of January I'll have all my resolutions outlined. Honestly, why to leave the whole thing for one day when you can think it better over 31 days? It's not like it's a regulation or something.

Today, the first workday of the year - though not mine yet - we've got a few things going on for the rest of the year. There weren't many errands to run, but one of the things I did was to set a savings planning account. This is a special type of savings account where you can monthly save a given amount of money - or more - but can't take it out until the contract is over. I decided to do this after much thinking and crunching numbers, in order to make sure I do save up some money for some future plans I have.

You know, sometimes, for some things, no matter how much you'd like it to work, you can't really always get with the program. You can't keep up with a diet, an exercise regime, savings plans, a book reading plan with a bookclub, or just with any club or program you may want to bring into your life. You may start these full of hopes and dreams, but as difficulties roll before you - and difficulties ALWAYS roll before you - and you get your first cracks and lags, you may fall a little behind your carefully planned program - which happens specially with things like weightloss, where you can't really plan ahead how much will you lose, and then you start losing less and less until you hit a proverbial plateau - and this can break your resolution and prompt you to quit. So what to do? How to make things work? Well, one of the ways is to make a program where you get help from sources outside of you.

Enroll into a program truly with the capacity to push you when you are lagging, or sign up with friends to do it. Sometimes it works to have help, have support and get the extra push from a third party, to get ahead with your plans. There's no shame in trying, and this can be what helps you get ahead. For instance, to get my University Degree and have my thesis done, it helped A LOT to do it with someone else - our University allows it, and often promotes it, so that less thesis have to be checked over, and they can all be easier programmed for defense -. When I felt hopeless, she lifted my spirit, and when she was about to throw the towel, I was ready to catch her and give her hope. We helped each other, stood by each other and shared the burden and the work. So it doesn't matter what plan you have, what you want to achieve, often having someone to do it with, someone to support and who supports you as well, is one of the best ways to get results.

However, remember that one thing VITAL to make any plan work is to know yourself and your capabilities. For instance don't propose to read 100 books in a year if you usually take a month to read a book either because you don't have much time to read books (others than those in your academic program, or those you need to read due to your work), or because you are normally a slowpoke reader. Trying out little, short-term tasks is the best way to measure up yourself and what you can handle. Things like List of 13 are good for this, even though these lists have been designed (by me, mind you) to be only about fun things.

Would you like to read more books? Make a mini task, like "read X books this month". Pick a relatively low number and see how you measure up to it, then go aumenting it month after month. Or pick something like "meditate once a week", "lose weight this month", "save up X amount of money this month"... or reverse things even, like "have a veggan day twice a week", or "have no unhealthy food this month"... or "spend less money on clothes/books/stuff", or "spend only X amount of money this month". Do you want to jump into it this year, no waiting about it? Well, it's up to you, but just in case, try out the mini tasks. Then, besides, your year doesn't have to start on January 1st, it could start the day of your birthday!

Whatever you decide to do, remember not to plan something that's over your capabilities - or what you can achieve in one year - seek to know yourself, and if things are a bit uphill, get help! I bet you can do it, and do it rocking!

1 comment:

LJ said...

Good advice - it is so easy to start with a big goal and then not be able to see the progress (often from a lack of planning how to achieve the goal, or not finding the support you need to help you stick to the plans), which leads to feelings of dejection, so you can't get back on track. :o)